Beijing: China looks as if it is paving the way for a big liberalisation of its coal buying, potentially opening the country up to plenty more imports.
Reuters reports that the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has submitted a plan to the State Council to scrap an annual coal contract system requiring suppliers to sell certain quantities to power companies at preferential prices. Domestic prices have always been kept artificially low by this mechanism. Were it to be scrapped then a significant jump in thermal coal imports would be likely. [28/11/12]